Today we changed things up and as part of live like a local we walked to breakfast from our hotel. It was a long, hot 30min walk, and we were able to take in the scenery. We saw a lot of stray dogs, lots of mini shops and the local town parade.
When we arrived at breakie we had Lugaw. Lugaw is a water with rice dish designed to make the rice expand and to make little amounts of rice stretch out to feed a whole family. It didn’t taste like anything, it was just wet and slimy. It was upsetting to think that people can live off such small servings, but it was interesting to see how such small amounts of rice can go a long way. We couldn’t imagine living off that all day everyday, not only the bland taste but the small amounts.
After we walked to the District High school. We taught them about the Australian animals, the culture and some of the places in Australia. We drew some of our native animals on the chalk board, and talked about the different animals. The local students found this really fun. We were offered food that was made by the students at the school, but as part of our live like a local, we accepted the food but did not eat it. Instead we packaged the food up and gave it to the children in the community at the Special Needs School.
At the Special Needs School a few of us went and taught with our buddies and the rest of us finished off painting the buildings we had already started over the last couple of days. Some of us were already hungry by this stage and had less energy to do the physical work.
We then walked back to lunch where we had Lugaw again. We mixed some salt in which made it taste better, it still wasn’t a great flavour and it wasn’t very filling, we were still feeling hungry straight after lunch.
We had a short car ride towards the farm before we got kicked out and walked the last ten minutes. We went to the farm and did some weeding using the hoes. The combination extreme temperatures and very little food, staying focused on the task was a struggle.
After a couple sweaty hours in the fields we trekked back to the farmhouse, had a small bowl of Lugaw for ourselves and then headed to some of the farmers houses that lived locally to gift them a bowl of Lugaw and to experience for ourselves how tough their living conditions were. We were all amazed at how quickly the locals ate the Lugaw that we had struggled to eat and complained about throughout the day. The family gave the food to the children and the elders first and the fathers who had been working on the fields missed out. It was tough to find out that the kids of the farmers were going to grow up in the same area and have very little opportunity to have a career in anything else other than farming in the future. The whole experience was very emotional for all of us, and really challenged us to think about our own lives and how lucky we are back home in Australia.
Shout out to Mum, Noni and Dad, hope everything is going well, will see you all soon. From Kieran.
Shout out to Talia, miss you lots- Keegan
Happy birthday to Michelle Hyde, from the one and only Bianca.